Root Planting Garlic!

We had a great day today with the Root Program for their second visit…it’s a coincidence but their first visit was harvesting garlic and today they planted garlic…lucky group!  Today we planted 200 cloves of garlic, the young chefs did an excellent job turning soil, breaking up the cloves, spacing, and planting the garlic.  We got to discuss ways that they cook with this ingredient and also got to talk about the process of growing the ingredients that they transform into delicious preparations!  A super positive group who didn’t let a cold day hold them back!  Also, thanks to volunteer Martin for coming down to help turn soil…check out some pics below…

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SSU Family Day

We had a really good morning in the garden…small crew, but I think they accomplished more than a crew twice their size would have done, in double the time!  In total we had three people from SSU and two of our “regulars” from the neighborhood.  Today we were winterizing the garden…we pulled and composted our zucchini, tomato, and pepper beds, and we also harvested a bunch of veggies from those beds to take home.  A couple of our volunteers decided it would be a good idea to sample the habanero peppers… I advised against it…ha!

It’s so refreshing to see young people who are excited to learn about the old school way of doing things!  Gardening is for everyone!  Gardening is positive!  Gardening is healthy!  Gardening brings people together!  Check out some pics below from the day…

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SHS Bridge Academy Fall 2018

We had a great day today with Salem High School’s, Bridge Academy coming out for a third visit…a few familiar faces and some new ones too!  The students came as a part of a community service project.  They harvested lots of veggies (eggplant / carrots / radishes / cucumbers / pumpkin / beets / and hot peppers) that will all go to the community.  They also did a great job pulling up old veggies for the season…nice job guys!

Top Left – Students and Staff Working / Top Right – Ms. Encarnacion’s first time in a garden and she had fun! / Bottom Left – Jordan with Habaneros / Bottom Middle – Aaliyah Harvesting Peppers / Bottom Right – Max with a Huge Blue Pumpkin!

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Farmer’s Market

A lot of people have questions about our weekly Farmer’s Market…here’s the story…

Times / Dates – Our market runs every Wednesday evening from 5:00 – 7:00…or until the vegetables are gone.  The market typically begins the second week of July and goes through late September.  This year our final market will be Wednesday the 26th of September.

Who Runs the Market? – The market is staffed by our teen workers and volunteers.

Why Don’t You Have a Table at the Salem Farmer’s Market Downtown? – Our veggies are grown in the neighborhood, by people who live in the neighborhood.  There’s really no need for our veggies to ever leave the neighborhood…this is truly local food!  (By the way, we love the Salem Farmer’s Market!)

Why Don’t You Promote the Market More? – We’d love to, but at the moment we have limited growing space…if we promote, everyone would go home with a cherry tomato and a piece of lettuce!  We have some big expansion plans in the works…as soon as our capacity to grow more veggies improves, we will begin to promote more widely.

What Vegetables Are Available? – Whatever is ripe is what we have…we try to plan our plantings so that we have a continuous supply of as many veggies as possible, but at the end of the day the plants tell us what to do!

How Much Do the Vegetables Cost? – Our vegetables are free…if you want to donate we appreciate it, but we do not expect it.  For folks who can’t donate, but wish to contribute, just talk to one of our staff…they’ll give you some snips and put you to work in no time!

Can I Take As Much As I Want? – Our staff estimates how many people we think will be at the market every week, then we assess how much produce we have.  Based off of those numbers we make a game-time decision on how much of each item a person / family can get.  We’re looking forward to a day when we can give away as much as people want.

SSU First Day of Service 2018

We were lucky enough to have Salem State University out for another year as a part of their First Day of Service.  SSU has been such an amazing partner to the Salem Y GreenSpace and the streak continued yesterday!  We had an all female group this year…they were so positive and open-minded…especially when we told them they’d be doing heavy lifting all day!  They moved 3 yards of soil, moved 300 gallons of water, seeded several garden beds, watered, harvested, and did general maintenance around the garden.  They were an amazing group of young women and we hope they come back and help us out in the future!  Best of luck to all of you and welcome to Salem!  Check out a couple pics from the day below…

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LifeBridge Shelter

This year we have been lucky enough to partner with LifeBridge Shelter here in Salem.  It has been an amazing experience and we love to see the way our work directly impacts our community.  We literally harvest the veggies and them walk them to Karen in the kitchen minutes later.  So far this season we’ve harvested approximately 300 pounds of food, much of which are items like leafy greens and herbs, you can imagine just how big the harvests are!  The residents and clients of LifeBridge have been amazing and positive helping us to care for the garden when we are off at other locations.  Check out some pics below of a recent work day in the garden…

  • Top Left – Fatoumata Harvesting Carrots
  • Top Right – Elise (“Mother of Seedlings”) Harvesting Lettuce
  • Bottom Left – Gio and Elise Harvesting Tomatoes
  • Bottom Right – Jorge Just Being Jorge

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August Pics

Oh man, way behind on updates…it’s been incredibly busy and positive in our garden this summer…too many things to catch up on at this point, but here are some highlights…our 8 teen workers did an amazing job this summer!  I’m so proud of all of them, they are all going places in their lives, they are truly inspiring and they are the heart of our project!  Also, we’ve continued having groups out to visit and they continue to walk away with new perspective and inspiration!  Our market continues every week and the variety of produce this year has been our very best.  Check out some pics below of us in action and our veggies…

Top Left – Pic From Market / Top Middle – Giovanny and Turnip / Top Right – Cucumbers / Middle Left – Gio 400 cloves of Garlic / Middle Middle – Corn / Middle Right – Hops / Bottom Left – Matt + Sunflowers / Bottom Right – YMCA Kids’ Garden

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Thank you so much to Root who came out and helped us harvest 400 heads of garlic and hang them up to dry!  They did a great job and had lots of good questions about agriculture and how veggies are grown.  We love the Root Program and think it’s great for young chefs to see where their ingredients come from.  Check out some pics below…

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SSU Sociology Institute

We were lucky enough to have Professor Moore and her amazing students out at the garden, they accomplished so much in just four days!  They were able to construct, fill, and plant two new large garden beds.  They also stained garden beds, seeded the green house, planted beds, and did many other chores around GreenSpace.  They were an incredibly positive group of people who we feel a strong connection with.  Check out some pics below from the week…

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